It was great to see that The Brits were back in all their glory this year, filled with performances, repetitive acceptance speeches and, of course, shots all round. Cat Jordan shares her thoughts on the evening of entertainment and celebration.
Since the announcement that they would be merging the Male and Female categories this year, it was great to see that four new categories were also added: Alternative/Rock Act, Dance Act, Hip-Hop/Grime/Rap Act and Pop/RnB act, which were all fan voted via TikTok. Winners of these categories were Sam Fender, Becky Hill, Dave, and Dua Lipa respectively.
Here is a full list of the award winners:
Album Of The Year: 30 by Adele
Artist Of The Year: Adele
Song Of The Year: Easy On Me by Adele
Best Group: Wolf Alice (the band who graced the front cover of The Mic’s latest print edition!)
Brits Rising Star: Holly Humberstone
Best New Artist: Little Simz
Best International Artist: Billie Eilish
Best International Group: Silk Sonic
International Song Of The year: Good 4 U by Olivia Rodrigo (my most played song of the year)
Dance Act: Becky Hill
Alternative/Rock Act: Sam Fender
Hip-Hop/Grime/Rap Act: Dave
Pop/RnB Act: Dua Lipa
Songwriter Of The Year: Ed Sheeran
Producer Of The Year: Inflo
The best part of The Brits is always the performances, which almost always have a few acts that shouldn’t have performed, some Eurovision-level wackiness, and of course some excellent vocals that leave the nation proud. Below is a selection of some of the most interesting performances of the night - for better or for worse.
Strangest performance: Ed Sheeran and Bring me the Horizon
Before Ed Sheeran’s 2017 Brit performance, he was known as the guy who sold out tours featuring just him, his guitar and his loop pedal. Even the fact he played alongside a band and backing singers was shocking, and then he bought out Stormzy and they premiered the collaborative version of Shape of You. It was instantly iconic, as it was something that (at the time) was so unexpected for Sheeran. Five years and an album dedicated solely to genre-bending collaborations later, people should’ve been ready to expect the unexpected, but nobody could’ve predicted the absolute fever dream that was this performance. From zombie dancers to people literally flying through the sky, this was a full-on production, made only stranger by his collaborative choice of rock band Bring Me the Horizon, I’m sure we can all imagine the shock on Mums’ faces throughout the nation. Worry not, concerned mums, Sheeran also performed love song, Joker and the Queen, which was the stripped back performance you were hoping for.
Most Improved Performer: Sam Fender
Sam Fender has always been a great performer, but since his 2019 Critics’ Choice award, he has absolutely blown up. Having followed Fender’s career for a few years now, it was incredible to see him to perform with what seems to be a new-found confidence. Filled with charisma and great vocals, this performance is going to become a monumental landmark in Fender’s trajectory to superstardom, and with the way his career is progressing, it will be exciting for the nation, and the world, to see what he does next.
National Treasure: Adele
Surprising absolutely nobody, Adele was the biggest winner of the night, taking home artist of the year, Song Of The Year (Easy on Me) and the big one, Mastercard Album Of The Year. Her performance felt effortlessly flawless, singing so beautifully whilst staying sat down. The performance seemed to be not only an acceptance speech, but thank you note to the nation, who seem to be united in agreeing on in the fact that she’s a national treasure.
Best Returning Performer: Dave featuring Giggs, Ghetts, Meetkz and Fredo
After massively delivering with his performance of Black back in 2020 (if you’re the one person who doesn’t remember it, go and watch it right now), people had extremely high expectations for his return to The Brits. Playing three different instruments throughout the set, the final one being an electric guitar that shot fire, all while telling an emotional story about his past, with lyrics such as “immigration, they took me from my mum’s arms” and “feel like everythin’ but my mum’s pay’s on the rise". It was still another song with political message, but with the personal story in there too, Dave really made the most of his opportunity to come back to The Brit’s stage. For people who hadn’t seen from him since his last performance, this was an intelligent and powerful song choice, solidifying Dave as the best returner.
Best Time For A Toilet Break: Liam Gallagher
I enjoy Liam Gallagher’s music more than the average person, and while the song Everything’s Electric seemed to be catchy and well-written song, I found myself enjoying the studio version a lot more. In the chorus Gallagher was really, REALLY reaching to hit the notes, probably making his performance a great time for people watching live to use the toilet. Yes, he is a British legend and an incredible songwriter, but perhaps he should follow in Ronnie Wood’s steps and stick to presenting next year. I do want to reiterate, I do enjoy his music, but compared to the other vocal talents performing, Liam Gallagher really fell short unfortunately.
Most Unforgettable Performance: Anne-Marie, KSI & Digital Farm Animals
I should probably change the title of this one, because other than his millions of superfans, absolutely no one will remember the KSI part of the performance. Yes, his vocals and stage presence are really improving, but I didn’t think any part of this segment was Brit-worthy. However, Anne-Marie will be remembered for decades to come for falling down at the beginning of her solo section of the performance. Even though it was a bit embarrassing, it not only proved that she was singing live vocals, but also that she is quite the performer, as she got up as quickly as she could and continued with the show, losing none of her personality or energy. From her recovery alone, she should definitely be invited back to The Brits.
Edited by: Gemma Cockrell
Featured image courtesy of Adele via Facebook.